On Being Opened and Letting Go

Our stewardship committee and church council are inviting us to participate in a new approach to stewardship.  This year we'll have Consecration Sunday on the first Sunday in November.  You will be hearing much more about this throughout the month.  There is an article from the Stewardship committee in this newsletter and there will be announcements and letters throughout this month for you to learn all about Consecration Sunday and how you can participate.  With stewardship on my mind it’s not surprising that I read Norman MacCaig’s poem “Small Boy” through that lens. MacCaig, a Scottish poet in the 20th century, was a humble man and deep thinker. His musing on the need to practice letting things go…and the difficulty most of us have in doing that, I find not only intriguing but really true to the point. Sometimes I wonder if we are so enmeshed in a consumer culture that we can only think in terms of commodities and possessions…of stuff.   I also worry that we are so caught up in a worldview and a theology of scarcity rather than abundance that the idea of unclenching our fingers is hard to contemplate and even harder to accomplish. But there are those moments of grace when, overcome by an experience of abundance, we find ourselves suddenly and delightfully free.  Often these moments of grace occur when another reaches out to share with us and we find ourselves abundantly blessed.   I hope your heart is touched (and opened) by this little poem from The Poems of Norman MacCaig. Small Boy He picked up a pebble and threw it into the sea. And another, and another. He couldn’t stop. He wasn’t trying to fill the sea. He wasn’t trying to empty the beach. He was just throwing away, nothing else but. Like a kitten playing he was practicing for the future When there’ll be so many things he’ll want to throw away If only his fingers will unclench and let them go.